Skip to main content

Addiction to heroin, opiates keeps climbing in Twin Cities

  • Author:
  • Updated:

A new report shows addiction to heroin and other opiates continues rising in the Twin Cities area. But there were declines in some categories of drug abuse during the first half of 2012.

Among the patients admitted to treatment centers, 21 percent were struggling with abuse of heroin or other opiates. That's a record high and is second only to alcohol among addictions.

One possibly encouraging sign is that addiction to prescription painkillers declined, reversing a recent trend. Drug expert Carol Falkowski says that could be a sign that recent focus on the problem is paying off. Or it could mean that people who become addicted to painkillers are switching to heroin, which remains plentiful and relatively cheap in the Twin Cities.

One Hennepin County Medical Center doctor tells MPR an addiction to the prescription painkiller OxyContin can cost $80 dollars a day, while buying heroin on the street costs about half that amount.

Last fall Minnesota unveiled a substance abuse strategy that spans several state agencies.

Next Up


Hope Breakfast Bar owners plan new location in Eagan

The Eagan restaurant plans feature an outdoor patio.

Screen Shot 2020-05-31 at 5.48.13 PM

Court approves $600K payment to protesters, restrictions on Minneapolis police

Each of the 12 protesters will receive $50,000 as a result.


15,000 Minnesota nurses vote in favor of second strike

The vote on Wednesday needed at least two-thirds of members' support to pass.

Jason Hackett

New face joining KARE 11's 'Sunrise' morning show

Jason Hackett will be joining Alicia Lewis and Guy Brown on KARE 11's morning show.

Screen Shot 2022-11-30 at 4.04.09 PM

Armed robbery suspect sought in two south metro investigations

The incidents took place at credit unions in Savage and Apple Valley.


Former Twin Cities plastic surgeon charged with sex crimes

Christopher Kovanda is accused of inappropriately touching woman under the guise of providing medical care.

Screen Shot 2022-11-15 at 4.23.26 PM

Minnesota man accused of murder in Chicago is arrested in Alabama

A 26-year-old man from a small town on the Iowa border is accused of murdering a Greyhound bus employee.


Support for Shakopee Public Schools employee diagnosed with cancer

The media specialist has been transitioned to hospice care recently.


Big November snowstorms uncommon in MN, but snowfall is increasing

This week's 8.4 inches at MSP Airport was one of the biggest November storms in the Twin Cities since 1991.


Minnesota nurses take vote on whether to hold second strike

The results will be determined Wednesday night.

unsplash medical marijuana

OCD, irritable bowel syndrome added to MN's medical marijuana list

They are the two latest qualifying medical conditions for Minnesota's marijuana program.